In my previous town, the Walmart was located about the same distance from my home as the closest mainstream grocery store, and since the route to get there contained far fewer traffic lights, I often drove to that part of town when I needed to stock up on my favorite cocoa powder and chocolate chips. (While writing my Healthier Chocolate Treats cookbook, I almost single-handedly bought out their entire supply of both!)
The town’s Krispy Kreme sat on the other side of the Walmart parking lot, and if I finished my shopping trip in the evening, I occasionally stopped by before heading home. I tend to crave donuts at night, rather than in the morning (enduring the big sugar rush and crash all before lunchtime is no fun!), and that was the only donut shop in town open past 2 pm in the afternoon.
Although nearly everyone I knew raved about Krispy Kreme’s iconic classic glazed donut, especially if it came hot from the fryer, I always preferred cake donuts instead of yeast ones, so I typically ordered their chocolate or blueberry old fashioned-style options. They also offered donut holes in the same style and flavors, but I rarely bought those… With their small size, it was way too tempting to eat the whole bag’s worth all by myself!
One time, I stopped by with a friend, and he decided to order an entire dozen in a variety of flavors so we could sample as many as we wanted. In addition to our aforementioned favorites, we walked away with countless others: sour cream, cinnamon sugar, maple glazed, chocolate frosted, powdered sugar filled with lemon cream (he loved all things lemon!), and even an apple fritter.
After taking tiny bites of each, I decided that those chocolate and blueberry cake donuts were still my favorites, but their apple fritter came in a very close second. That tender dough paired with big juicy chunks of fruit and a sweet glaze covering it all… Yum!
When I recently drove past a different Krispy Kreme, I started thinking about that apple fritter all over again. It took all of my self-control to keep my foot on the gas pedal and not flip a U-turn at the next traffic light, so when I arrived back at home, I baked these Healthy Apple Pie Scones to satisfy my cravings instead. With the same cozy flavors but no refined flour or sugar (or grease from frying!), these pastries are much healthier than those Krispy Kreme donuts—and they even have nearly 5g of protein too!
HOW TO MAKE HEALTHY APPLE SCONES
To make these healthier scones, you’ll start with whole wheat flour. That’s right, just regular ol’ whole wheat flour! This is the kind that I buy because it’s fairly inexpensive and ground more finely than other brands, so it gives your baked goods a more tender texture. (And if you prefer, I’ve included a gluten-free option in the Notes section under the recipe too!)
Whereas traditional scone recipes typically include a full stick of butter (or two) and plenty of heavy cream, these lighter ones are the exact opposite! You just need 2 tablespoons of butter. That’s it! It’s extremely important that you use very cold butter, straight from the refrigerator. Really cold butter won’t heat up until you put the scones into the extremely hot oven, and it will create little air pockets and a very tender crumb when it melts.
Note: This is why I recommend against using coconut oil, if at all possible, because coconut oil has a much lower melting point than butter and will quickly turn to liquid once you begin mixing it into the dough.
Because we’re skipping the extra butter and heavy cream today, the rest of the scones’ tender texture comes from one of my favorite ingredients in healthier baking: Greek yogurt! Greek yogurt provides the same moisture to the dough for a fraction of the calories, and it even gives your scones a protein boost too.
For that iconic pie flavor, you’ll use cinnamon and diced apples. It’s important to cut the apples to be very small, no larger than the size of chocolate chips, to ensure the scones bake evenly. I typically use red Fuji apples, but any firm red or green apple will work.
Just before popping the baking sheet in the oven, you’ll brush the tops and sides of the scones with milk. This seals in the moisture to keep the insides of the scones perfectly tender, and it also creates a hint of a crust on the outsides. I love that textural contrast!
Fresh fruit, cozy spices, dessert for breakfast… Does life get any better than this?? And when you make your own, remember to snap a picture and share it on Instagram using #amyshealthybaking and tagging @amyshealthybaking IN the photo itself! (That guarantees that I’ll see the notification from you! 🙂 ) I’d love to see your healthy apple pie scones!
Healthy Apple Pie Scones
- 1 ½ cups (180g) whole wheat flour or gluten free* flour (measured like this)
- 1 ½ tsp baking powder
- 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 tbsp (28g) unsalted butter, cold and cubed
- ½ cup (120g) plain nonfat Greek yogurt
- 3 tbsp (45mL) pure maple syrup
- 3 tbsp + 2 tsp (55mL) nonfat milk, divided
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¾ cup (94g) finely diced apple (about 1 small)
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter or the back of a fork until the mixture resembles fine crumbs. Stir in the Greek yogurt, maple syrup, 3 tablespoons of milk, and vanilla. Fold in the diced apple.
- Using a spatula, shape the dough into a ¾” tall circle on the prepared baking sheet, and brush with the remaining milk. Slice the circle into 8 triangular segments with a sharp knife. Bake at 425°F for 16-19 minutes, or until the tops are lightly golden. Cool on the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
View Nutrition Information + Weight Watchers Points
You may also like Amy’s other recipes…
♡ The Ultimate Healthy Apple Muffins
♡ Healthy Apple Pie Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies
♡ Healthy Cinnamon Apple Oatmeal Muffins
♡ Healthy Apple Pie Snickerdoodles
♡ Healthy Apple Pie Oatmeal Cookies
♡ Healthy Apple Pie Protein Overnight Oats
♡ Healthy Apple Pie Granola Bar Bites
♡ Healthy Apple Pie Protein Bars
♡ Healthy Slow Cooker Apple Pie Filling
♡ The Ultimate Healthy Apple Pie
♡ …and the rest of Amy’s healthy scone recipes!